Written by Susan Campbell
Editor’s note: Today C-HIT debuts a monthly column by writer Susan Campbell. Susan, who worked at the Hartford Courant for more than 25 years, is an accomplished author having published two books including, “Dating Jesus: A Story of Fundamentalism, Feminism, and the American Girl,” which won the 2010 Connecticut Book Award for memoirs. We are pleased she’s joining us – writing on issues of health and safety. You’re welcome to weigh in.
In 2005, Ebony Murphy-Root totaled her car coming home from the Big E.
The timing was horrible. Murphy-Root had been on her parents’ insurance plan until just two weeks before, when she’d aged out. At the time, Connecticut was one of a handful of states that allowed young adults to stay on their parents’ policies beyond age 18.
Growing up, Murphy-Root’s father was a Teamster truck driver, and the family enjoyed robust coverage, and this was her first time as an uninsured patient in a hospital emergency room, waiting to be told she was OK, if shook up.
It was also the first time Murphy-Root, now a sixth-grade literacy teacher at Hartford’s Jumoke Academy Charter School, said she felt “shabbily treated at a hospital or medical facility. I had to wait hours on a stretcher in a hallway to be seen, and it was clear it was because I was uninsured.”
Her bill was $2,000, and with early annual salaries hovering around $25,000, she was years paying it off, at $20 and $25 at a time.
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